Minister for the presidency, Milly Babirye Babalanda has eulogized tycoon Bulaimu Kibirige aka BMK as an industrious Ugandan who inspired many modern local businessmen in the country.
BMK died Friday from a Nairobi hospital where he has spent about a year receiving treatment for prostate cancer.
News of his demise hit many Ugandans, with minister Babalanda also taking to her Twitter handle to express sadness at the loss of one of Uganda’s most accomplished entrepreneurs.
“We have lost an industrious son of Uganda who set the pace inspiring a new breed of local entrepreneurs. Rest In Peace, Hajji BM Kibirige!” Babalanda tweeted.
Tycoon spent billions
Meanwhile, it has emerged that the amiable tycoon spent over Shs3bn while trying to save his life. A source close to the family revealed that the money was spent on treatments, flights, and consultants. Other expenses included accommodation of caretakers in whichever country they would take him, visa arrangements, and upkeep money.
“He has been to many countries like the UK, Germany, USA, Hong Kong, Thailand, and even in the United Arab Emirates seeking for treatment and possible cure of the cancer but the Lord had other plans. We are however happy that he put up a courageous fight and defied earlier timelines that doctors had previously given him,” the source said.
Famed for having founded the bodaboda business in Kampala, BMK will also be remembered for being a pacesetter in the hospitality industry among local Ugandans. In his biography, BMK revealed that he was diagnosed with cancer in 2015. In 2018,
however, doctors in the UK told him he would live for only three months and die. He however bravely believed he could live longer, which saw him relocate to the USA to seek alternative treatment. There, also, he was given four months but he still relocated to Germany in pursuit of a longer life. His will to live also saw him seek treatment in Thailand, India and later Tanzania and then Kenya where he finally died while on palliative care.
By press time his body was yet to jet into the country but his close friend and fellow tycoon Matovu Mansour aka Yanga said all preparations were underway to repatriate it in time. He is likely to be buried on Sunday at his ancestral home in Nkoowe, Wakiso district.